Tanzania: Police Hold Four Poachers Using Chemicals

Marc Nkwame — allAfrica

August 14, 2012

Karatu — FOUR suspected notorious elephant poachers have been arrested in the Northern Highlands forest which strides the Mbulu-Mbulu ward of Karatu District and the Ngorongoro Conservation Area Authority (NCAA).

The NCAA Manager of Conservation Services, Mr Amiyo Amiyo said on Tuesday that the suspected poachers have not been using regular methods to kill the elephants. In the place of firearms, the poachers have devised an unorthodox technique to ensnare and kill the elephants by using pumpkins spiked with highly poisonous chemicals.

The suspects have been identified as Jonah Hamsi, his younger brother Romani Hamsi, Issaya Arusha and John Nindi who were found placing ten large pumpkins which were all drilled with holes and stuffed with a purple-coloured item.

NCAA Communications Manager, Mr Adam Akyoo said the village where the four suspects come from is among the areas benefitting from the authorities' myriad community development projects.

A report with reference number 242/5394 from the Chief Government Chemist in Dar-Es-Salaam where samples of the chemical were sent to be analyzed, indicates that the pumpkins were laden with "Nematicide" chemicals which falls under "Carbamates" group of pesticides and which can kill a large elephant in less than 20 minutes.

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Related tag(s): Poaching Problems